Posted on: 24 March 2016
When seeking compensation for injuries sustained during a motorcycle accident, you need an attorney who has experience with these kinds of collisions. While any personal injury attorney may be legally able to represent you, one that specializes in motorcycle accidents will be most qualified to argue your case. A motorcycle accident attorney will be familiar with the nuances that are unique to motorcycle accidents as compared to generic auto accidents. Here are four questions you can use to find just such an attorney.
1. What is the number of motorcycle riders you've represented in the past year?
This question helps you avoid hiring an attorney that only occasionally takes on a motorcycle-riding client. Personal injury attorneys that only dabble in motorcycle accidents will have represented just a few motorcycle accident victims in the past year. Attorneys that exclusively represent bikers will have represented several, at least.
You don't need to hire an attorney who has represented dozens or hundreds of motorcycle accident victims. A lawyer with a small practice may not have lots of cases, but they should have a decent amount of experience. If they answer that they've only represented one or two bikers, move onto the next potential attorney. If they answer that they've represented at least a handful of bikers in the previous 12 months, ask them the next question.
2. How long have you been representing motorcycle riders?
This question gives you a picture of how experienced a motorcycle accident attorney is. By hiring an attorney who has represented motorcycle riders for at least three to five years, you'll benefit from the lessons they learned while working on other motorcycle accident cases.
3. How much does your typical case settle for?
Don't expect a motorcycle accident attorney to have lots of cases that settle for millions of dollars. In 2013, settlements for personal injury cases (which include motorcycle accident victims' cases) averaged just $24,000. You shouldn't just go with the attorney who has the highest average settlement.
Instead, you should hire an attorney who has cases that settle for amounts comparable to what your settlement may be. For instance, if you only have minor injuries, you may want to look for an attorney who has settlements around $24,000. An attorney who specializes in cases that have larger settlements might not spend much time on a small case like yours. Conversely, if you have lifetime debilitating injuries, you may not want a lawyer who has typical settlements of just $24,000. You might want an attorney who has experience with bigger cases like yours.
4. Are you part of any professional organizations?
Any attorney you hire should be a member of and in good standing with your state bar.
Additionally, you should seek out a motorcycle accident attorney who participates in the American Association of Justice and the trial lawyers association in your state. The former is a respected group of accomplished attorneys, and the latter is a statewide organization of trial lawyers. If your case goes to trial, you'll want an accomplished attorney who has trial experience.
If you're considering seeking reparations for injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident, take your time to find the right motorcycle accident attorney. Don't necessarily hire the first one in the phone book or the first one you talk to. Take your time to interview several, asking each of them these four questions. Settlements take a long time to arrive at, even if they don't go to court, and taking some time to find the right lawyer for your case won't delay the process too much. It will, however, make sure you have the most qualified attorney representing your case.
To get started, speak with a representative from a firm like Scherline And Associates.Share